Lecture 28: Hebrews (Part 2)

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Lesson

Hebrews is written to Hebrew Christians to demonstrate how Christ fulfilled the Mosaic covenant.

Outline

General Letters

Part 2

II. Hebrews – The Superiority of Christ

A. Introduction to Hebrews

1. What we don't know for sure

a. Author (but not Paul – see 2:3, 2 Thessalonians 3:17)

b. Date (though probably pre-70)

c. Audience (though probably Jewish Christian)

d. Location (though probably Rome, 13;24)

2. What we are told

a. 12:4, 10:32-34 (implying between 49 & 64)

b. 13:22 and genre of sermon

B. Hebrews Themes

1. Prologue (1:1-4)

2. Superior to Angels (1:5-2:18)

3. Superior to Moses (3:1-4:13)

4. Superior to the Priesthood (4:14-7:28)

5. Superior to the Old Covenant (8:1-10:39)

6. Superior to the Old Testament Heroes of the Faith (11:1-12:29)

7. Conclusions (13:1-25)

C. Hebrews Outline

1. Prologue (1:1-4)

2. Superior to Angels (1:5-2:18)

a. In sovereignty (1:5-14): so follow Him closely (2:1-4)

b. In suffering (2:5-13): so we are free from sin (2:14-18)

3. Superior to Moses (3:1-4:13): so don't rebel, but enter God's rest

4. Superior to the Priesthood (4:14-7:28)

a. So accept God's grace (4:14-16)

b. Comparison with Aaron (5:1-10)

c. Key warning against apostasy (5:11-6:20)

d. Comparison with Levi (7:1-28) [Jesus is like Melchizedek]

5. Superior to the Old Covenant (8:1-10:39): so perseverance is crucial

6. Superior to the Old Testament Heroes of the Faith (11:1-12:29): so focus on Jesus

7. Conclusions (13:1-25)

D. Exegetical Highlights of Hebrews 1-5

1. High Christology of 1:1-4

2. Uses of Old Testament in 1:5-14

3. Relationship between humanity and Jesus in 2:5-9

4. Implications for counseling of 2:17-18 and 4:14-16

5. Stages of Sabbath rest in 4:1-11

E. Rest in Hebrews

1. Creation

2. Sabbath

3. Canaan

4. David's day

5. In Christ, now and in the life to come

F. Can a Christian Lose Salvation? (6:4-8)

[Hypothetical View – Not Possible; but if it were…]

[The following views represent a continuum from Calvinist to Arminian]

1. Calvinist

a. Preconversion Jew View: Those yet to make a serious commitment

b. Phenomenological Unbeliever View: In community of believers, but lacks genuine faith

2. Arminian

a. True Believer Under Judgment: Will face discipline but not lose salvation

b. Phenomenological True Believer: Apostasy can cause fallen Christians to lose salvation

[Covenant Community View: Rejection of Israel as a people; has little to do with individual salvation]

G. The Superior Priesthood of Christ (According to Hebrews)

[Levitical Priesthood vs. Jesus' Priesthood]

1. Many in number vs. one

2. Finite vs. eternal

3. Foreshadowed salvation vs. complete salvation

4. Offered by sinners for their own sin vs. offered by 1 without sin, not for himself

5. Repeated vs. once for all

6. Under temporary old covenant vs. under permanent new covenant

7. In earthly sanctuary vs. in heavenly sanctuary

8. Barriers to access to God vs. intimacy with God

9. Blood of bulls and goats vs. his own blood

10. Outward cleansing vs. inward cleansing

11. Conscience still guilty vs. full forgiveness

12. Incomplete sacrifice for incomplete sanctification vs. complete sacrifice for complete sanctification

13. No eternal security vs. ??

H. Jesus as a priest like Melchizedek (Chapter 7)

1. Abraham's descendant was Levi; Melchizedek received Abraham's offering

2. Since Jesus is God, Melchizedek and the tribe of Levi were priests to Jesus.

I. A Duel of Dualisms

1. God vs. Satan

2. Good vs. Evil

3. Moral vs. Cosmological

4. Heaven (reality) vs. Earth (shadow)

5. Eschatological

a. Jewish: This age and the age to come are separate

b. Christian: This age and the age to come overlap (tension of "now" and "not yet")

J. Exegetical Highlights of Hebrews 6-13

1. The significance of 2:3, 3:19, 4:2, 10:39 and 12:25 for the Calvinist-Arminian debate [see also Mathewson and deSilva]

2. 8:8-12 – longest Old Testament quote the New Testament from longest Old Testament prophecy of New Testament (new covenant)

3. 9:27 – crucial for eschatology

4. 10:29 – and the problem of sanctification

5. 11:1 – faith as believing God's promises about the future despite the appearances of the present

6. 11:39-40 – others don't receive all that was promised, so we can!

7. 12:1-3 – and the stadium metaphor

8. 12:4-13 – fathers and discipline

9. 13:17 – submission to church leaders

Duration

52 min

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